Thursday, May 17, 2012

Public Meetings for Observer Highway and Newark Street Safe Designs May 30th 6-8pm

The latest community meeting for safer streets in Hoboken has been scheduled.


The public is invited to community meetings regarding the redesign of Observer Highway and a section of Newark Street. The meetings will take place on Wednesday, May 30th in the basement conference room of City Hall, 94 Washington Street. The meeting for Observer Highway will take place from 6p-7pm followed by a meeting for Newark Street from 7pm-8pm. Both meetings will be “open house” format and residents can visit at any time.

The City of Hoboken has $2 million in federal funding to improve Observer Highway and $240,000 in federal funding to improve Newark Street between River Street and Washington Street. The funding for both projects was secured by Senator Robert Menendez.

The City previously held public meetings on August 17, 2010 and March 3, 2011 to discuss the redesign of Observer Highway and on July 19, 2010 and March 23, 2011 to discuss Newark Street. ◦

Theresa Minutillo and Mark Toback Support Current District Schools over a New Charter Divinci

Below is a note from Hoboken Board of Education and Kid's First Team member Theresa Minutillo who supports Superintendent Mark Toback's opposition to the Divinci School Charter which would in their opinions be detrimental to the current district schools which they were either elected or hired to support. As board members of district schools they are simply fulfilling their obligations to their positions to support district schools.

Hoboken Charters depriving Public Schools of $$ and diversity

A New Charter School Application pending- Act Now!

Dear Friends and neighbors,

Below is a copy of Dr. Toback's impact statement (with attachments) regarding the creation of a new charter school in Hoboken. The letter expresses strong concern about the negative impacts that adding another charter school would have, not only on existing schools but the community as well.

If you agree with the Superintendent, please sign the petition enclosed and ask your friends, neighbors and colleagues to do the same. If you choose to take no action, I implore you to at least read the full statement to understand the complexities of the issue as I am sure that this will be front page news someday soon.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Theresa Minutillo

Summary of Key concerns (scroll down for original letter)

  • Education – What programs will be cut? With no economies of scale and existing fixed costs, the $1,4000,000 needed for startup cost will more likely have to come from educational and extracurricular programs.
  • Financial – 2% Tax Increase. To limit impact on program cuts, local taxes can be raised by 2%, however, even that would not raise the entire $1,400,000 needed for startup.
  • Budget – First tax levy increase in 3 years. Although the Board has kept the municipal tax levy flat for the past three years, the Board would be forced to raise the tax levy as over 90% of the charter per pupil cost comes from the local tax levy. (Charters are not funded by the state)
  • Segregation – Addressing the segregative impacts. The data enclosed vividly details the segregative effect on the children of Hoboken, in terms of both ethnicity and socioeconomic status. An additional charter would only exacerbate this effect.
  • Here is a note from Kid's First Hoboken Board of Education Vice Presidetn Theresa Minutillo
  • Duplication of Services – The charter application calls for duplicating curriculum, equipment and services already provided by the Hoboken Public School District.
  • Efficiencies – Charters are separate, independent districts. With the addition of yet another Charter School, Hoboken will have five separate boards of education, five Business Administrators, five depts. of teachers (who will also receive tenure), five depts. of Support Staff (clerks, custodians, teacher aides), five vendor contracts, sewer bills, utility accounts, etc…. Not the consolidation of services that the Governor had intended. All funded through the municipal tax levy.
Link to Petition:

Dr. Toback’s Original Statement:

Dr. Mark Toback
Superintendent of Schools

April 25, 2012

Mr. Christopher Cerf
Commissioner of Education
New Jersey Department of Education
100 River View Plaza
PO Box 500
Trenton, NJ 08625

Dear Commissioner Cerf:

I appreciate the fact that you made a great effort to reach out to school superintendents during your convocation at Jackson High School in late February. You communicated your concerns about a number of important issues and demonstrated a great awareness of matters important to school leaders. I enjoyed hearing about the ongoing efforts of your new leadership team to complete the task of developing a comprehensive database that will create many new opportunities to analyze student performance information. I have already had a chance to use the software to assess the performance of our elementary schools. I also appreciate your efforts to immediately establish standardized systems for all school districts in calculating high school graduation rates and the academia growth of students.

As a result of your outreach efforts, I feel comfort in communicating serious and legitimate concerns I have regarding the potential formation of a new charter school in Hoboken. I have included compelling information supporting those concerns and I am hopeful you will consider my letter when making a determination about this proposed charter school. As you will see, I am outnumbered in many ways. There are many letters of support included in the application packet for the proposed DaVinci Charter School. Another challenge is the fact that charter applications are being reviewed by a committee of volunteers and many committee members are charter school advocates.

The charter school applicants did a very good job in developing many parts of their school concept. There is no doubt that STEM programs are very appealing for a variety of reasons. While you have been presented with certain information from the would be founders and supporters of the DaVinci Charter School, I feel an obligation to present my analysis regarding the impact potential new charter school on the students in our regular (non-charter) public schools as well as the impact that three other charter schools have already had on the regular public schools.

Based on my review of NJAC 6A:11-2.2, I understand that you and the members of the State Board of Education have a significant amount of work to do in analyzing the impact of granting a new charter. On the following pages, you will find that I have included administrative code, statutes regarding charter schools, and passages drawn from the DaVinci application. I have provided my feedback and/or analysis for your consideration. My goal was to focus on factual information as much as possible.

6A11-2.2 Prior to the granting of the charter, the Commissioner shall assess the student composition of a charter school and the segregative effect that the loss of students may have on its district of residence. The assessment shall be based on the enrollment from the initial recruitment period pursuant to NJAC 6A11-4.4 (a) and (b).

I have included my analysis of the student composition for each of the schools for your review (Attachment A). The analysis, taken directly from enrollment statistics posted on the NJDOE website for the 2010-2011 school year, vividly reveals that the existing charter schools in Hoboken have had a segregative effect on the children of Hoboken. The segregative effect exists in terms of ethnicity and socioeconomic status. You can see that in almost every category, there is a large divide between the enrollment in the regular public (non-charter) schools and the charter schools.

As supplemental enrollment/demographic information, I have enclosed enrollment numbers for Hoboken Charter School (Attachment B). While the school appears to be the most diverse of the charter schools when enrollment is summarized, there are some important facts missed with the summary enrollment figures. Enrollment at the early grade levels is actually much less diverse. After completing a tour of the Hoboken Charter School high school classrooms, I am concerned about the level of funding this charter district is using to support the education of the high school students, especially when compared to the funding the state provides to support the education of these children.

The composition of students at the existing charter schools in Hoboken is relevant because the applicants for DaVinci expressed their interest in replicating the student enrollment at the Hola Charter School and due to the fact that there already is a segregative effect. You will note the following on page 2-12 of the application for the DaVinci Charter School:

Lunch Rates: We based these figures on the experience of the Hola Charter School which has a similar population to what we anticipate ours to be, and uses the same food vendor we plan to use, as well as on actual quotes from the food vendor, Revolution Foods.

We assume a 70% participation rate in full price school lunch purchases at a purchase price of $3.50, which is what Hola experienced at this price point, and a FRL rate of 20% – slightly higher than Hola’s.

In addition to concerns about fair competition among food service vendors and the fairness of the charter school random student selection process, this simple passage about school lunch creates what I see as a significant legal and civil rights issue. As you can see from Attachment A, the anticipated composition of the DaVinci Charter School, if similar to Hola, or any other charter school in Hoboken, would only serve to further segregate a population of children who have already experienced a segregative effect.
In addition, you will also see the following on page 1-80 of the DaVinci application:

Hoboken is just over a square mile, and most children walk to school. Many of our students would probably come from within a half mile of our location, given that the bulk of new 3-bedroom construction is in the Northwest area of Hoboken. All streets in Hoboken have sidewalks, and it is a very walking-friendly town.

Attachment C is a printout of three bedroom housing available in Hoboken on April 23, 2012. I have highlighted the units from the north part of town where the student enrollment is anticipated. I included this information to give you a sense of the real estate values so you can further understand the socioeconomic differences between the students intended to enroll in the DaVinci Charter School and the students already attending the non-charter Hoboken Schools. You can also see vast differences in socioeconomics based on attachment A where you will see the number of students in free and reduced lunch at each of the non charter public schools and you can compare this to the anticipated DaVinci population where only 20% of the students are projected as free and reduced lunch students.

Laura Siegel, the would be founder and Principal of the proposed DaVinci Charter School, spoke to me directly about the anticipated student enrollment. She stated to me that she is interested in bringing back into the public schools a number of students currently enrolled in private schools. This plan does not bode well for the students in our non-charter public schools due to the fact that the private school student enrollment intended for the DaVinci Charter School means that there would simply be a decrease in funding for our existing students. I am concerned that despite a required random selection process, the DaVinci founders have already stated their desired student demographic, and they have actually put this in writing. This is troubling and at odds with what I believe the New Jersey Department of Education seeks in charter school enrollment based on the existence of 18A:36A-8 (e) which reads as follows:

The admission policy of the charter school shall, to the maximum extent practicable, seek the enrollment of a cross section of the community’s school age population including racial and academic factors.

The DaVinci founders would like to open their school at the Monroe Center in Hoboken. It is important to understand that space is at a premium in Hoboken and the existing charter schools have struggled with finding space for a number of years. Large parts of the Monroe Center have been vacant for some time. However, the other charter schools in Hoboken have not pursued the use of the Monroe Center despite their desperate need for space. There is a reason the existing charter schools have pursued classroom space at sites other than the Monroe Center. The Monroe Center is zoned as a commercial and industrial site and has been an industrial site throughout most of its history. There are countless examples of problems when former industrial sites are used for other purposes.

I am concerned that a Hoboken city official would provide assurances that a zoning change would happen in advance of any application or other legal process. While industrial usage of the space may not pose a problem, the use of this space as a school may have an impact on the health and well-being of the students due to the historic usage of the site.

At a minimum, I believe the suitability of the Monroe Center for usage as a school location requires further investigation before any charter is granted for the DaVinci Charter School based on 18A:36A-10.

A charter school may be located in part of an existing public school building, in space provided on a public work site, in a public building, or any other suitable location. The facility shall be exempt from public school facility regulations except those pertaining to the health and safety of the pupils.

We are anticipating a total charter enrollment of approximately 600 students in the 2012-2013 school year. If the DaVinci Charter School is approved and enrollment progresses as outlined in the application, the charter enrollment in Hoboken will exceed 800 students. Under 18A:36A-4, there is language regarding the formation of charter schools and limits to enrollment in excess of 500 students or 25% of the student body of the school district in which the charter is granted, whichever is less. If this enrollment limit is applied to this district, we already have a charter enrollment in excess of 500 students and 25% of the student body.
I think it is important to consider the full impact of charter numbers on the school district overall and by grade level. When you analyze the charter grade level enrollments (the charters in Hoboken are focused primarily on the elementary grades) and look to the future, we are rapidly approaching a point where there will be an equal numbers of charter elementary students as there are regular public school elementary students without the addition of another charter school. We also face a system of disjointed educational programs because many of the students would have to return to the non-charter public schools or attend school elsewhere based on the limited grade levels that exist with most of the Hoboken charter schools. Hola Charter School has a charter to operate up until the middle grades and the same applies to the DaVinci application. The students exiting the charter schools (and their parents) face some difficult educational decisions due to this planned lack of continuity into the middle grades.

Financially, the creation of another school would be devastating to the operation of the Hoboken non-charter public schools (Attachment D). This year, the charter schools, due to increased enrollment and a seemingly changed school funding formula, experienced an enormous increase in funding and there was a corresponding decrease in funding for our non-charter public schools. While on the surface it appeared that the Hoboken non-charter public schools received a significant increase in slate aid, the increased charter school allocation led the district to actually experience a reduction of nearly $400,000. If the DaVinci charter is granted, the increased enrollment will continue to have an impact on the students attending the regular public schools by forcing additional reductions in funding to support their academic programs.
In terms of programs, the creation of another charter school would inhibit progress in our school district. We are interested in possibly establishing a middle school program to rectify some issues that exist in the district including our own demographic issues.

Currently, we are housing our eighth graders at Hoboken High School. Many parents have expressed concerns about this practice. We also have middle school aged students attending our elementary schools. At Wallace School, many of our middle grade students are housed in temporary trailers. We are exploring the idea of opening a middle school at the same time the DaVinci Charter School would open if the charter is granted. The requirement for the district to pay for the anticipated enrollment up front would prevent us from creating the middle school program we desperately need because we would be unable to increase our budget within cap to fund both.

When you consider the issue of efficiency and the general belief that there are economics of scale, the idea of operating five separate school districts (four- charter districts and one public non charter) within one square ride seems contradictory to any efforts to increase efficiency. Further review of the proposed staffing for the DaVinci Charter School (found under the application Section 13 Human Resources) indicates that only six classroom teachers would actually be hired to educate the students with subs and a variety of other support staff, administrators, and contracted service providers making up the balance of the proposed staffing. Section 2-2 (Detailed Budget Narrative) indicates projected instructional expenses of approximately $675,000 while projected administrative expenses total approximately $438,000. 1 would like to share more information about comparative costs at charter schools for administration, but I learned that charter school budgets are not available for public review. I was very surprised to learn that charter school budgets cannot be reviewed by the public even though they are public schools.

I suggest that a number of corrective steps must take place immediately to end the segregative effect that already exists based on the enrollment facts presented for the three previously established charter schools in Hoboken. I request an evaluation of the required random selection process for charter students because I do not believe that the segregative effect of the Hoboken charter schools can be explained as a random occurrence. At a minimum, it appears that the charter schools are in violation of 18A:36A-8. The existing charter schools in Hoboken are not seeking a cross section of enrollment in the community’s school age populations including racial and academic factors. If the 25% or 500 student rule applies in Hoboken, then I believe that the NJDOE must immediately take steps to limit increases in charter school enrollment because the enrollment already surpasses the limitations established by law.

I recognize that there are many reasons why a group of parents would like to form a school with a focus on science and technology. I share their belief that school programs with a particular focus or theme would add to the many educational opportunities in Hoboken. In fact, the middle school program under consideration would probably operate with multiple career or academic focus opportunities for the students. We are already using the FOSS science program. This is the same science program proposed for use at DaVinci. We are also considering a new math program, possibly the same program proposed at DaVinci (Singapore Math). The DaVinci School would likely duplicate many initiatives we have in place or are planning. Children attending the charter and non-charter public schools would benefit greatly from this middle school program that will most likely never come to fruition with another charter school approval in Hoboken. The middle school program and the other accompanying changes that would be necessary in the district to allow for a middle school would serve to bring the community together as opposed to further segregating the children.
Overall, there is a need in Hoboken for a focus and enhancement of middle level educational opportunities as opposed to an effort to duplicate educational services at the elementary level while simultaneously incurring significant administrative costs. In addition to the three other existing charter schools, there are a number of private schools in operation in Hoboken such as Stevens Co-Op, The Hudson School, The Mustard Seed School and a variety of others. One basis for the charter school movement is to offer parents options. There are already a surprising variety of educational options in Hoboken.

Recently, here was an article appearing in the news where you questioned the legal expenses that a school district incurred in opposing all application for a charter school. I would like to make you aware that this district did not incur legal expenses thus far in connection with the DaVinci application. More than likely, there are other legal points that could be made regarding the DaVinci application, but have not been made because I did not confer with our school attorney. At the same time, I am concerned about future legal expenses related to this charter application due to the delicate nature of the issues.

In closing, I would like to note that this letter may or may not reflect the opinions of the individual members of the Hoboken Board of Education. The Hoboken Board of Education may or may not take their own action in expressing their opinion regarding the possible formation of the DaVinci Charter School. While I am not opposed to charter schools in many cases, and I understand that there can be benefits with a system of charter schools, I am opposed to the application for the DaVinci Charter School for the many reasons noted above.

Sincerely Yours,
Mark Toback
Superintendent of [Hoboken] Schools

 Attachment Links:


Church Square Park Feedback Meeting Thursday May 17th 5-8pm Tonight

The City of Hoboken invites residents to a community meeting on Thursday, May 17, 2012 to solicit input on the community’s desire for improvements to Church Square Park. The meeting will take place on the 2nd floor of the Hoboken Public Library, located at 500 Park Avenue next to Church Square Park, from 5pm to 8pm.

“Church Square Park is used by so many people for many different purposes, so we want to hear everyone’s ideas on how we can improve the park for our entire community,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer.

The City will use a portion of a $1.6 million bond for city-wide parks improvements towards improvements at Church Square Park. Funds from the bond were also recently used to renovate playgrounds at Jackson Street Park, Jefferson Street Park, and Legion Park. The Hoboken Family Alliance’s Project Play previously raised $50,000 in private funds for playground improvements which are also being donated towards the Church Square Park project.

The City of Hoboken has hired Suburban Consulting Engineers as a planner to assist in developing a plan for Church Square Park. The planner will be in attendance to solicit public input and will develop a plan following the meeting. That plan will be presented at a public hearing on the 2nd floor of the Hoboken Public Library on June 12 from 5pm to 8pm.

Update: Residents who cannot attend may also complete the questionnaire and return it to


4th Ward Park Eminent Domain Ordinance Passes 7-1 on First Reading - Mayor Zimmer remarks

Last night, May 16th at Hoboken's City Council meeting the ordinance to acquire Block 12 through eminent domain if necessary was introduced and passed on first reading 7-1. The lone dissenting vote was Mike Russo. Councilwoman Terry Castellano was not present at the meeting. The passing on first reading simply allows the ordinance to a second reading at the next City Council meeting. At the next meeting scheduled for Wednesday June 6th,  the City Council can discuss the merits of such an ordinance and the public can comment. Any 4th Ward resident interested in seeing a park come to their ward is can help that cause by  attending the next Hoboken City Council meeting and have your voice heard Wednesday June 6th at 7pm.

Mayor Dawn Zimmer a 4th Ward resident herself is on record as committing to a a park for the 4th ward and part of block 12 is sought to at least create a 1 acre park in the South West area of Hoboken. Part of this block is  currently used as a surface parking lot. Negotiations with the developer have not been conclusive and this ordinance gives the Mayor the authority to acquire the land through the Constitutionally protected process of eminent domain. The Mayor's prepared remarks advocating for this ordinance are printed below for whoever did not get a chance to hear about the meeting or has not yet heard the mayor's stance on the issue...

 Mayor Zimmer’s remarks on a Southwest Park 

City Council Meeting, May 16, 2012

 "It has been a long road in our fight for a Southwest Park. 

Back in 2006 I was one of several community members for the original Southwest Parks Coalition Steering Committee.

I remember being petrified to speak at my first Council meeting.

My commitment to a Southwest park ultimately led me to run for 4th Ward Council. 

Since that time, the City Council has repeatedly expressed its unanimous support for the creation of a Southwest Park.

Now it is time for all of us to put our money where our mouth is. 

It is time for us to show we mean what we say by finally delivering on the first part of what ultimately could become a large park in Southwest Hoboken.

This could finally be the start of a park that benefits all Hoboken residents and especially the underserved 4th Ward residents.

Expressing support in an election time mailer is easy, but when we make those promises we have an obligation to deliver more than just words---

We have an obligation to deliver the park that we promised. 

I’ve heard several justifications from Council members planning to vote no against tonight’s ordinance. I would like to directly respond to those concerns:

First some Council members may feel that the redevelopment or rehab process is somehow the less expensive way of creating park space because instead of writing a check we can get the park land for free.

Let’s be clear:  Nothing is for free.  A giveback for park land will come with larger densities much generally much more valuable than the direct cost of acquisition. 

Some Council members have said that this land is too small for a park, so why bother acquiring it. 

First, if the City Council designates the area in need of rehab or redevelopment, then you will be in a position to expand the size of the park.

I will work to create a larger park space, but ask you to recognize that even a 1-acre park would benefit the community. Just as the one-acre parks of 1500 Park and Maxwell Place serve Northwest residents, so too would a one-acre park in Southwest Hoboken. 

Finally, 4th Ward residents are just as entitled to adequate park space as residents in other neighborhoods.  The closest dog run is a full 15-20 minute walk away in Church Square Park. 

For those who think Church Square Park is too crowded, enabling Hoboken residents to use a park in their neighborhood would be a huge benefit, and help alleviate the overcrowding.

Finally, some of you have expressed concern with regard to eminent domain.  While I strongly oppose the use of so-called Kelo eminent domain which involves taking property from one owner to another for development purposes, I believe eminent domain for park space truly represents an important public purpose.  

As elected officials we must use the City’s resources as wisely as possible while working to improve the quality of life for all Hoboken residents. If we are truly committed to providing more parks in Hoboken, then the only way to responsibly do this is to use all the tools legally available to the City including eminent domain for park space.

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, this Council needs to fully understand that a no vote means risking $3 million in county grant money.

For the last year my Administration has worked with you, and been guided by your votes. Most recently the Council voted 9-0 on March 7th for the City to send offer letters to Block 12 property owners. 

Turning around and asking us to consider completely different properties at the last minute is a mirage the public will see right through. You may want to look like you support a park in the Southwest, but in reality you will be failing to support the first real concrete steps taken to acquire land for a Southwest park.
If you are committed to a Southwest park, if you want to make certain that the City does not lose $3 million in grant money, then I urge you to vote yes.

Thank you."


Saturday, May 5, 2012

City Wide Yard Sale and Flea Market May 19th at Church Square Park

From the City of Hoboken, an opportunity to perhaps find some bargains in a stagnant economy....

Mayor Dawn Zimmer & the City of Hoboken Invite You to Join the 3rd Annual


 Saturday, May 19 • 10am – 3pm


SELLERS: Register your location or sign up for an assigned space at the Church Square Park Flea Market. Download the form at or go to the Cultural Affairs office at City Hall, 94 Washington Street • 2nd Floor, by May 13, 2012.

SHOPPERS: List of registered participants & locations will be distributed.


There is a voluntary suggested donation of $10 per individual household or $25 for multiple families getting together in one building.

*Condo residences must receive permission from their HOA prior to registering.


There is a charge of $25 per 10’ x 10’ space. Space is limited. Specify which block you want to be on.  All monies collected will be used to cover the cost of all promotional materials, flyers, maps, etc., as well as balloons.

Every host is responsible for keeping their sidewalk clean after the sale.

For further information call 201-420-2207

River Street in Hoboken to be Resurfaced Starting Monday May 7th

Here is the latest update from the City of Hoboken on street repair of River Street from Hudson Place to 4th Street. This starts Monday May 7th....


On or about Monday, May 7, 2012, construction is expected to begin on the milling and resurfacing of River Street from Hudson Place to 4th Street.

Due to the high traffic and pedestrian volume in this area, the work must be performed at night between the hours of 8pm and 6am. Boswell Engineering anticipates the milling and resurfacing work will take place Monday and Tuesday nights, weather permitting. All work is anticipated to be completed by Thursday, May 10.

There will be some inconvenience for access to and from the residences. Every effort will be made to assure that the inconveniences are minimal. All work will be completed as quickly as possible. Please be aware of the “No Parking” signs which will be posted and, for your safety, please be aware of the construction signs. We apologize for any inconvenience you may experience due to the construction activities and appreciate your cooperation.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Council President Ravi Bhalla Annouces Launch of "Hoboken Votes"

This note is about getting people registered in Hoboken from City Council President Ravi Bhalla.....

Council President Bhalla Announces Launch of 
"Hoboken Votes"

Community Based Civic Initiative Aimed at Increasing Voter Registration and Participation 
A group of concerned residents announced today the formation of Hoboken Votes, a community-based initiative aimed at increasing voter registration and voter participation across the City of Hoboken.

"The primary purpose of Hoboken Votes is to ensure that as many Hoboken residents as possible are registered to vote so their voices may be heard in the upcoming Presidential Election and in future election for years to come," said Ravi S. Bhalla, one of the members of the committee in formation of Hoboken Votes.  "As a benchmark, we have set a goal of registering 1,000 new voters between now and the Presidential election," Bhalla said. 

"This is a non-partisan voter registration campaign aimed at encouraging residents to make their voices heard at the federal, state, county and local levels," said Philip Cohen.  "Whether you are an independent, Republican, or Democrat, we encourage all residents to make sure they are registered to vote and familiar with the voting process."

Hoboken Votes will have its first kickoff event this Sunday at the Hoboken Arts & Music Festival, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., where it will have a table to register voters and answer questions about the voting process.

For more information, to register to vote, or to volunteer for this effort, please contact Mr. Bhalla at  


Update from Jen Giattino on Parks and Quality of Life Issues

An Update From Jen Giattino 6th Ward City Councilwoman on various initiatives in the City of Hoboken:

  • Sinatra Park is scheduled to be completed on 12/21/12. Although this does not help with field space for this fall, it's looking good for Spring 2013 
Sinatra Park Soccer Field Under Repair

1600 Park Master Plan
  • The field at 1600 Park is scheduled to open in the Spring of 2013

  • Mama Johnson Field will be turfed by end of summer.  This will enable it to be used more efficiently than the current grass field

  • Municipal Garages:
    The wait lists have been eliminated!

  • Visitor Parking Permits:
    Many residents are not aware that the Parking Utility sells scratch-off hang tags for individual day use. The scratch-off hang tags cost $5. You can purchase up to 7 hang tags and keep them on hand for when a visitor comes to town.

    To purchase daily Visitor parking permits you need need the same proof of residency used for  Residential parking permit. 

    Visitors cannot park on the resident only side of the street, but they can park on the other side for over 4 hours.

  • “Extended Parking Zones":
    This permits residents to park 15 feet from crosswalks on “outbound” street segments and 25 feet from crosswalks on “inbound” street segments during certain times.

    “Outbound” and “inbound” street segments are the portions of the street that permit a vehicle to drive away from and towards an intersection, respectively.

    Parking in “Extended Parking Zones” is not permitted between the hours of 7am and 7pm on days when public schools are in session.

    To maintain clearance for emergency response vehicles, any vehicle parked closer than 15 feet from a crosswalk is subject to a summons and towing if it is determined that it could impact emergency response time. Please refer to the diagram below for examples of parking that is permitted versus not permitted.   

Benches on Washington Street:
I have worked with one of the city's planners to identify certain benches on Washington Street that would better serve residents and visitors by having them face away from the street rather than facing parked cars. The City has begun to turn around benches and the feedback has been positive.

Distribution & Posting of Flyers:
As many of you know, I have been advocating for better enforcement of the distribution and posting of flyers. The current ordinance is being changed to read more clearly. Thank you to all the businesses who have stopped and to all the constituents and other residents for their help with this matter. If you do see a flyer on a car, posted to a tree or on a utility poll, please take it down and notify me with the details.

Thank you for your time.
Please contact me with any thoughts or concerns.
Jen Giattino
6th Ward City Councilwoman
Look for the "Sign up"  link below to receive future 6th Ward News & Info!


Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Fund For a Better Waterfront Update on the Monarch Project

Here is an update from the Fund For a Better Waterfront on the Monarch Project ....

Board hearing for Monarch pier project postponed (yet again) 
(May 1, 2012) Originally scheduled for March, then April and most recently May 1, the new hearing date for the high-rise towers proposed for a pier at the Shipyard project is now slated for Tuesday night, June 5. On February 17, 2012, Hoboken's planner Eileen Banyra submitted her report to  the Hoboken Planning Board with a long list of items that needed to be addressed by the developers, including the need to apply for variances. For the past two months, the developers have failed to respond to Banyra's report other than to claim that no variances are required. The Fund for a Better Waterfront (FBW) and the Tea Building Condo Association have retained a planner who will testify on their behalf and their lawyers are gearing up for the June hearing.  

On May 23, County Board of Freeholders to hear Monarch appeal
On February 22, the Hudson County Planning Board stunned the Monarch developers with a 6 to 2 "no" vote, rejecting their application. A long list of speakers, mostly from the adjacent Tea Building, testified in opposition to the project. For the past 20 years, FBW has opposed private development on Hoboken piers due to the fact that it would destroy the City's opportunity to create a continuous public park for the entire length of Hoboken's waterfront. 
On March 29, the Barrys filed their appeal of the County Planning Board decision. The Hudson County Board of Chosen Freeholders will be making a determination as to whether or not to uphold the decision of its Planning Board. This special meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, May 23 at 6 p.m. at 567 Pavonia Avenue in Jersey City.
Also on appeal by the City, FBW and Tea Building, is the State Departmental of Environmental Protection's granting of a waterfront permit for this project. The City has also filed suit against the developers for failing to abide by a developer's agreement from 1997 to create open space and tennis courts on this same pier as per the Hoboken Planning Board approvals and state permit at that time.  

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HOHA 5 Mile Classic Run May 13th - Get Registered Early and Save

Here is a great event for a good cause, The HOHA 5 Mile Classic Run. Proceeds go to the Jubilee Center:

Hoboken runners, be sure and get registered for the longest running race in Hoboken currently, The HOHA Five Mile Classic...


Exciting HOHA 5 Mile Classic is back for its 14th Running

with new kids run and Baby Jogger Jaunt May 13th in Hoboken

Hoha Five Mile Classic Start 2010 HobokenThe Longest Running Race in Hoboken returns for its 14th running on May 13, and with it, fun and new features that will have everyone running to Hoboken as their Mother’s Day destination.

Joining the 5 Mile Run will be a newly formatted kids run with prizes and a 1.5 Mile Baby Jogger Jaunt (an event exclusively for runners pushing strollers). Before the events, participants can enjoy a cardio and stretching warm-up session and after, flowers, light snacks and live music. For the first time runners will be able to register as teams.

“Whether you’re a mom or if you want to run for your mom, this year’s 5 Mile Classic is the perfect day and way to celebrate Mother’s Day,” says HOHA president, Mona Lopez. “The race course winds along the scenic Hoboken waterfront and provides tons of dining opportunities for families and extended families to spend the rest of the day dining or exploring Hoboken.”

The Race Day schedule includes:
  • 8:30 AM Cardio kickoff
  • 9 AM 1.5 Mile Baby Jogger Jaunt
  • 9:30 AM Kids Fun Run
  • 10 AM 5 Mile Race
Post Race events include flowers for finishers, live music and light snacks on the waterfront on Pier A at the Finish Festival area. Out of town runners can sign up for access to showers at Club H Fitness to make the most of their day in Hoboken.

To celebrate the day, participants can share “Why Moms Rock” at www.facebook/

Proceeds from the race benefit the Jubilee Center, a non-denominational community center in Hoboken that provides after school youth programs.

Register today at Advance on-line registrations accepted through May 9. Single registration for the 5 Mile Race is $22 in advance, $25 on race day. Advance registration for combo run of 5 Mile Race and Baby Jogger Jaunt Run is $30. Fun Run race registration is $5 in advance and on race day.

Advance online registration and applications will be available until May 9th. Mail-in pdf of applications for each of the Baby-jogger jaunt and the 5 Mile and Fun Run are available at the HOHA website, and they need to be postmarked by May 5. Applications are also available now at local Hoboken stores - Fleet Feet Running Store, located at 604 Washington Street, or Hoboken Golf, 125 Grand Street – where they will be accepted (cash or check only please – no credit cards).

T-shirts will be provided to runners while supplies last. Runners who pre-register are guaranteed a shirt. In the 5 Mile Classic, awards will be given to the overall top male and female finishers and the top three male and female finishers across 10-year age group categories. For more information, see El Bambi Baby will award a gift to the top finisher in the Baby Jogger Jaunt.

About HOHA

The Hoboken Harriers Running Club, founded in 1988, is a diverse group of runners and joggers from in and around Hoboken, New Jersey. The Club, known as the HOHAs, provides runners with camaraderie and support as well as a social component through sponsoring various social and charitable events annually.

The Hoboken Harriers running club conducts runs six days a week, with the most popular runs on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday nights. Runners of all abilities are welcome - please contact us if you have an interest in running. We do recommend that you attend a Tuesday night run for your first run with the Club.

Consult the HOHA run schedule on our web site, and feel free to come and run with us. Visit for more information. ◦